Members Evening 1st December 2021
All credit to everyone who braved a cold and wet evening to attend the members evening at Wrag Barn on 1st December. The aim of the evening was to thank our members for their support over the past 20 months and to explain why we’ve carried out some of the work we have on the course and our plans for the future, both on the course and in the clubhouse.
The speakers were Scott Talbert, England Golf Operations Director for Wiltshire, Johnathan Callister Wrag Barn Management Director and Chris Haspell, Agronomic Consultant and they were all introduced by Tim.
Scott gave an update on the World Handicap System and advised that; to date all is going well with just a few issues to iron out. He explained that he has compared the movement in handicaps for both the Lady’s and Men’s section throughout a year prior to WHS and post WHS and found that the percentage decrease and increase in handicap is very similar. Therefore the new system isn’t having a huge impact in people’s handicaps and the slope rating should help golfers who find themselves playing on harder courses. He acknowledged that it isn’t possible to input a score on a worldwide basis yet, but advised that this will be possible soon. Wales is imminently going to be linked up and Scotland should be connected by May next year – all being well!
Scott handed over to Johnathan who pointed out that the last time he had attended a members evening was 12 years ago when we first formed Wrag Barn Management Ltd with Mark Smith, Tim and I as the other Directors. The evening had an undercurrent of suspicion as it was expected that the course would be primed for sale; there was quite a bit of nonsense going on at the time so it wasn’t really surprising, but we’re still here and the only change is that our eldest Chris Manners is also a Director and working with the F&B team with menu development and staffing structure.
Johnathan thanked all our members for their support over the past 20 months, he really enjoys coming to Wrag Barn despite the long drive from Kent; the welcome he gets always makes it worth it and the satisfaction he gets from being part of the team keeps him coming back. He gave an overview of plans for the clubhouse; at the moment we’re still at the stage of obtaining quotes and debating opinions – we’ll keep you posted!
Chris Haspell, who wins the prize for the longest commute from Scotland, explained how he sees his role at Wrag Barn, namely setting realistic goals which will future proof the course. He has helped us plan and implement work on the course which will extend the playing season and improve the resilience of the course during periods of rain and drought whilst thinking about the aesthetics and presentation.
Under his guidance we have invested in machinery to introduce as much sand as possible into the greens and will continue with a programme of core removal to reduce thatch and firm up the playing surface. Chris has been invaluable in helping us plan the drainage programme and introduced us to the contractors who worked on the 11th and 15th, there is more to be done and the full benefit will be seen once the soil has settled down and the extra grid work completed.
Thank you to our team of staff at Wrag Barn and to all our members, the staff go above and beyond and so many members give their time and expertise to keep the show on the road.
Verity 2nd December 2021